Hockey Headlines

Monday, 30 June 2014

It Finally Happened

It reportedly had been discussed as a trade during the NHL season as both teams looked for upgrades for the playoffs, but the trade for PA Parenteau never materialized for the Avalanche and Canadiens. It was understood that Daniel Briere wasn't going to last in Montreal as a fourth-line centerman as the Canadiens looked to move the wily veteran, but there were no takers before the playoffs started. Monday night, both the Avalanche and Canadiens had made a move that helped both teams.

The trade sees Colorado send Parenteau and a fifth-round pick in 2015 to the Canadiens for Daniel Briere, and it sounds as though Briere is relieved to be given an opportunity elsewhere after toiling on Montreal's oft-used fourth-line.

"I kept saying to myself, 'Good things are going to happen, just be a good team player,"' Briere said in a phone interview with The Canadian Press. "And I feel in a sense it's a little bit of what's happening today. I get the chance to go somewhere where I feel wanted again."

While I respect Briere for his play under less-than-ideal circumstances, his arrival in Colorado will mean that he could play on the third line as he'll need to out-battle Matt Duchene and Nathan MacKinnon for an opportunity on the top-two lines. I can't see that happening, and that would mean that Briere slots into the opening left potentially by Paul Stastny as he explores free agency. Can he handle a third-line role after speaking with head coach Patrick Roy?

"Basically it's going to be up to me," Briere told reporters. "My job is to get there, be in shape and ready to go when the season starts. That's my job and good things will happen. That was kind of the message there."

Parenteau, on the other hand, found himself all over the Avalanche lineup this past season as he was in and out of Roy's doghouse. While he played well at times, injuries slowed his production and, ultimately, he found himself in Roy's cross-hairs when it came to players who weren't producing.

He can, however, step into a couple of roster spots that may be open as the Habs have players heading to free agency. Parenteau, at 31, can still be extremely productive if he's healthy, and it appears that the shoulder and knee issues that plagued him last season are healed. Can the Quebec-born player step his game up playing with Les Habitants?

"I think I'm at a stage of my career where I'm old enough to deal with all the pressure that comes with it," Parenteau told reporters. "It's a huge deal for me, my family, everyone that surrounds me. I'm excited and I'm up to the challenge."

Parenteau also makes the Canadiens a little bigger than what Briere did, and the Canadiens can use some size along the wings. If Parenteau can bring a little grit to the ice game-in and game-out, he'll become a fan favorite in La Belle Province much like Brendan Gallagher. Both players could be a good match for one another.

Both teams addressed their needs in this trade, and it makes sense for both sides. While it may have taken a couple of years for Parenteau to get to Montreal after the two sides had discussed the opportunity a couple of seasons ago when Parenteau was a free agent, the two teams made a deal that worked for both of them.

I like it.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

1 comment:

Michelle Manary said...

I like this trade too. Great article!